South Sudan vice-president, wife, entire household test positive for coronavirus
London, May 19, 2020 (AltAfrica)-South Sudan’s Vice-President Riek Machar has tested positive for coronavirus.
He said he had no symptoms, but would self-isolate for 14 days.
His wife, Defence Minister Angelina Teny, some bodyguards and other staff have also tested positive.
Mr Machar was tested on 13 May after one of the members of the government task force leading the fight against the virus tested positive. The vice-president was until last week a member of the task force.
Machar “has issued a public statement declaring that he is found positive, and from today will self-quarantine in his residence for the next 14 days”, it said.
South Sudan, which is emerging from a devastating six-year civil war, has so far recorded 339 cases of COVID-19 and six deaths, according to the latest figures from the health ministry, also released on Monday.
Though the number is relatively low, aid agencies are sounding the alarm over a sharp rise in cases in recent days.
Last week, the UN said at least two people living in camps for the internally displaced had tested positive raising fears that coronavirus could spread rapidly in the overcrowded camps.
A case has also been confirmed in a similar camp in northern Bentiu, home to almost 120,000 people.
The country continues to be gripped by humanitarian emergency and hunger, even after Machar and President Salva Kiir – the main rivals in the civil war – formed a unity government in February.
The two men remain deadlocked on key issues such as the control of regional states.
A lot of prominent Africans have also falling victims of the rampaging virus. Chief of staff to Nigerian president, Abba Kyari recently died of the virus “The deceased had tested positive to the ravaging COVID-19, and had been receiving treatment. But he died on Friday, April 17, 2020,” a statement said.